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Flea Beetles - Chrysanthemums

Flea Beetle Damage on Chrysanthemums
Flea Beetle Damage on Chrysanthemums

Flea beetles (Red Headed Flea Beetles) can be an occasional pest on chrysanthemums and herbaceous perennials. Shiny black beetles (about 3/16 -1/4” long) with a reddish head (in good light) feed primarily on young foliage, chewing holes and causing leaf spot damage.  Symptoms are similar to four-lined plant bug injury, but the flea beetle spots are more irregular in shape. Red Headed Flea beetles are primarily a pest on woody ornamentals in nurseries and have also been reported feeding on  asters, chrysanthemum, coreopsis, rudbeckia, salvia, sedum, veronica, zinnia, sages, heucherella, heuchera, primula, This is a native beetle with a widespread distribution in the US east of the Rockies.

Growers that have had this pest, have reported that it moves into the crop quickly, causes damage and then leaves.

Photos submitted by grower.

Flea beetle on Heucherella